Professorship and Chair established Through Gift in Memory of Renowned Physician
The John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professorship and Dean's Chair has been bestowed on Donald E. Wilson, MD, MACP, Vice President for Medical Affairs and Dean of the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore. The honorary title preserves the legacy of the late John Z. Bowers, MD, a renowned medical educator and historian who graduated from the School of Medicine in 1938.
The professorship and chair was established by a gift from Dr. Bowers' wife, Mrs. Akiko K. Bowers. "My husband was an extraordinary human being whose life was devoted to caring for others throughout the world," said Mrs. Bowers. "This professorship is a fitting tribute not only to him, but to the School of Medicine, which he held in the highest regard."
Dr. Bowers served as dean of two medical schools, the University of Utah and the University of Wisconsin. He was a pioneer in the creation of opportunities for minorities in medicine, and president of the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, a philanthropic organization dedicated to improving health education. Dr. Bowers was an expert on the effects of atomic radiation, and an authority on Japanese and Chinese medical education. He wrote numerous books and journal articles. He died in 1993.
"I am honored to accept this enduring and prestigious title, and I am enormously appreciative of the generous gift that led to its creation," said Dean Wilson. The gift was made in perpetuity, and all future deans of the School of Medicine will receive the Bowers' title.
For Mrs. Bowers, supporting future generations in the field of science will fulfill a lifetime of wishes. "I established this fund especially for Dean Wilson to honor his outstanding career and accomplishments," she said. "Dr. Wilson's guidance to medical students will improve the quality of future physicians, leading them to fulfill their primary responsibility of providing quality health care with compassion."
Born in Tokyo, Mrs. Bowers arrived in the United States in 1961 to study business administration as a graduate student at New York University. In 1963, she became the first woman to accept a position with the Japanese ambassador to the United Nations, directing protocol and serving as liaison between the Japanese government and the U.N. She married Dr. Bowers in 1970.
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